Posts Tagged: ‘Seminar’

Karl Tanswell @ SBG Toronto (Aug 2013)

August 23, 2013 Posted by School of Thought

Objects are easier than they appear

En route to their Las Vegas wedding, SBG Toronto was fortunate to have SBGi Mainline’s head coach and BJJ Black Belt, Karl Tanswell and his lovely wife to be,  Ella Yee stop over in Toronto to spend a few days at the gym with us.  Now, if you haven’t had the pleasure of experiencing one Karl’s training sessions you are missing out on a game changing experience.  Not only is the information based on decades of experience, but his method of communication and the delivery of information makes him truly stand out as one of the best coaches in this world, and this weekend he proved no less.

I am not going to post a run down of things we worked on over the two days (hey, you should have been there for that ;) ), but instead, I would just like to comment on one of the many ideas that Karl planted in our minds to help us rethink our jiu-jitsu, which is the idea of ‘simplicity’.  In this day and age of Youtube, digital video and just more and more people doing BJJ, you can really get overloaded with information to the point where you get lost and frustrated in the vast web of positions, motions and techniques.  Unlike most BJJ instructors out there, Karl doesn’t just give you more techniques to add to the web of confusion.   Instead, he gave us the tools to help simplify it.  Helping us find the common denominator between techniques, chiseling away the unnecessary as opposed to adding more and allowing all participants to have a moment of Jiu-jitsu clarity by the end of the session.

Thank you to Karl and Ella for visiting us and sharing your experience.  Thank you to Coach Jason for providing another great opportunity for growth.  This journey only gets better and better.


John Frankl Seminar @ SBG Toronto (Feb 2013)

February 6, 2013 Posted by School of Thought

After being exposed to Coach John Frankl’s seminar last year for a mere three hours and having him have a significant effect on the way I view jiujitsu (everything is a position), I was really excited to see how much of an effect ten hours with the man would have. During a short conversation, with him over a beer on Friday, he said “Let’s do it right.” Wow. We did it right that’s for sure!

Over the following weekend Coach Frankl broke down what is usually taught in a basic jiujitsu class on self defense. How to escape a headlock. However, he did not teach us how to escape, he gave us the tools and thought processes to start identifying what makes each jiujitsu move work..dropping more than a few knowledge bombs that resonated with all of the students regardless of their experience level …. from a student who had been with the gym for only one week, to multiple coaches from the SBG tribe who have been with the gym for over ten years. Everyone left with new tools in their belt.

The theme of the weekend’s seminar was “ space management”. Space Management is vital for achieving success in jiujitsu. John is a crossfit beast, however he is also smarter than your average bear and knows not to use muscles when a perfectly good bone structure (FRAMES) will use less energy and will work on a wide variety of opponents not just smaller white belts. ” You can’t rely on moving your opponent but you can always move yourself”. Leading directly to sweeps, “you must make a hole for them to fall into.” These were a few of the simple concepts that John drilled into us throughout the seminar.

Put simply, the man has a special skill with words. With nineteen years of experience he was able simplify jiujitsu concepts like no one I’ve ever seen. Most jiujitsu websites or dvds rarely touch base on the fundamentals of why moves work; they normally just show how the individual does the move. (left hand right sleeve, feed the other hand for a cross grip at the lapel, right foot on the hip… blah blah blah.) His uncomplicated style of teaching allowed all of us to really understand the basics of jiujitsu.

Coach Frankl left us with many knowledgeable lessons that we will be digesting until the next time he drops by the SBG Toronto gym…here are just a few of them:

1. The concept of repeatability. Much like science, the sweep, submission or tactic should work multiple times, on a variety of different opponents. If you can only do a sweep twice without burning out, it is not repeatable.

2. Believe in the technique, its going to take some time.

3. The art of being a good training partner, checking your opponent’s base and correcting his mistakes.

4. Slow and steady is vital for process. Don’t train too hard for six months, get injured and not training for six months. ([+6] + [-6] = 0)

Thank you John Frankl for answering all our questions and rolling with us and exposing us to your years of experience. Thanks to Coach Jason Lancucki for bringing down another legend of the game to help influence and inspire us to be better. The experience was definitely a game changer in the way I view jiujitsu.

Viva la SBGi!


Matt Thornton @ SBG Toronto (Sept 2012)

September 11, 2012 Posted by School of Thought

This past weekend President of SBGi, Matt Thornton, was at TPTM/SBG Toronto for a two day seminar. On day one the focus was on no gi and dealing with someone who is striking in our closed guards. Always a game changing experience, Mr. Thornton focused on the fundamentals at the core of each technique. The fundamentals, according to Matt, are what makes these techniques, not just sport specific, but are the same techniques that you would use in a real life self defense situation.

Day two was a continuation of the previous day, but added some stand up clinch into the mix. At the end of the day we did rounds of some competitive drilling. Matt Thornton at this time for the second time in his career, stopped a seminar for a belt promotion. Our very own Pirashanth Kesavan (Pk) after a stellar performance on the mat, is now a blue belt. After asking Coach Lancucki if there were “any more white belts like that”, Sherman Patterson and Mark Garcia tested successfully for their blue belts.

With three more blue belts and everyone having an amazing weekend of growth it is needless to say that this was an amazing weekend at TPTM-SBG Toronto. Special Thanks to Coach Lancucki for coordinating and hosting another amazing Thornton seminar.


John Frankl @ TPTM

March 17, 2012 Posted by School of Thought

We had the pleasure of having BJJ Blackbelt, John Frankl drop by TPTM all the way from Korea to teach this morning’s class.  We were pretty lucky to be exposed to some high-level BJJ and everyone went home with some quality, game-changing information.

Here’s some feedback from after the clinic:



Just a few of the adjectives that I overheard during John Frankl’s BJJ clinic this morning @ SBG Toronto….just saying.

Humbled and honoured to be part of process.


Spent the morning with bjj black belt John frankl. That was a game changing morning. Feeling pretty lucky.


Awesome seminar today at TPTM with John Frankl thanks Jay!


Thank you John.


Photos from Matt Thornton’s Seminar

September 27, 2011 Posted by School of Thought

Photos from Travis Davison’s Seminar

February 28, 2011 Posted by School of Thought

Photos from Karl Tanswell’s Seminar

June 18, 2010 Posted by School of Thought

Photos from John Kavanagh’s Seminar

March 26, 2010 Posted by School of Thought

SBGi’s John Kavanagh @ TPTM/SBG Toronto!!!

March 6, 2010 Posted by School of Thought


It’s official….SBGi BJJ BlackBelt phenom, John Kavanagh, has deemed us worthy of his presence!!

John will be taking names and kicking ass (along with sharing some superbly-gnarly skill-sets honed deep within the Irish rain forrest) on the eves of Monday March 22nd and Wednesday March 24th.

Space is limited so register today. for more info.

Matt Thornton @ SBG Toronto (Feb 5, 6 & 7)

February 8, 2010 Posted by School of Thought

What a great start to 2010 for TPTM/SBG Toronto!

Everyone had a solid workout, got in lots of rolling, and made immediate improvements to their game while Matt Thornton (SBGi President & BJJ Black Belt) led us through a packed weekend of BJJ focusing on positional posture. Friday night began with open rolling, a look at half guard postures followed by Q & A. More open rolling on Saturday, where we then worked proper posture and hand fighting from inside the closed guard, then on to the same for butterfly guard. Sunday kicked off with more open rolling, some crushing from cross-sides & 10/2 positions, followed by more rolling and Q & A.

Many thanks to all who could attend, especially those who made the drive from the St.Catharines & Kingston. Stay tuned for more info on future training opportunities again this year with Matt, BJJ Phenom John Kavanagh, as well as our good friends Mike & Rebecca Sweeney.